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New Employee Profile - May 2015

May 1, 2015

Brian Friesen

Brian Friesen, NERSC

This month, Brian Friesen began his post as the first NESAP (NERSC Exascale Science Applications Program) postdoctoral fellow. NESAP is a collaborative effort in which NERSC partners with code teams and library and tools developers to prepare for the NERSC-8 Cori manycore architecture. Friesen has been assigned to work with researchers in Berkeley Lab’s Center for Computational Sciences and Engineering, who maintain the BoxLib code, an adaptive mesh refinement framework used by a wide variety of different scientific codes.

Before coming to NERSC, Friesen was a graduate student at the University of Oklahoma. He worked in a computational astrophysics group specializing in radiative transfer and spectroscopy of supernovae. Friesen notes that his interest in programming piqued in junior high and with some encouragement from his older brother, he decided to pursue it.

“In college I majored in physics and started to experiment with public scientific codes like ATHENA, in order to get a feel for how people solve physics problems using computers. In graduate school my work was in computational astrophysics, focusing in particular on radiative transfer and spectroscopy in supernovae. I actually used NERSC resources to do most of my calculations,” he says.

Born and raised in Wichita, Kansas, Friesen left home to pursue a Bachelors of Science degree from the Oklahoma Baptist University in Shawnee. An aspiring triathlete, he spends much of his time running, cycling and swimming. Eventually, he hopes to run the San Francisco marathon.


About Computing Sciences at Berkeley Lab

High performance computing plays a critical role in scientific discovery, and researchers increasingly rely on advances in computer science, mathematics, computational science, data science, and large-scale computing and networking to increase our understanding of ourselves, our planet, and our universe. Berkeley Lab’s Computing Sciences Area researches, develops, and deploys new foundations, tools, and technologies to meet these needs and to advance research across a broad range of scientific disciplines.

Founded in 1931 on the belief that the biggest scientific challenges are best addressed by teams, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and its scientists have been recognized with 13 Nobel Prizes. Today, Berkeley Lab researchers develop sustainable energy and environmental solutions, create useful new materials, advance the frontiers of computing, and probe the mysteries of life, matter, and the universe. Scientists from around the world rely on the Lab’s facilities for their own discovery science. Berkeley Lab is a multiprogram national laboratory, managed by the University of California for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science.

DOE’s Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit energy.gov/science.